Teen Mom dad Ryan Edwards was sentenced to nearly a year in prison last week after he violated his probation by leaving court-mandated rehab early before being arrested for DUI and additional drug possession charges.
As a result of Ryan pleading guilty to harassment, he was given a suspended prison sentence of 11 months and 29 days. The violating an order of protection and stalking charges were dismissed. The possession of a controlled substance charge remained open, and was reliant on Ryan completing 45 days of rehab.
Ryan’s sentencing last week was essentially the harassment sentence being changed from suspended to active. It’s important to point out that Ryan has multiple possession of controlled substance charges and a DUI still pending, so he can still receive additional time for those.
Ryan also recently destroyed the interior of the home he shares with his wife, Mackenzie Edwards, and their children. There have been no charges filed yet stemming from that damage.
Judge calls Ryan “a very fine young man”
The one-year sentence might seem light to some, but given that the sentencing was for a probation violation, just lifting the suspended sentence at the violation hearing was expected and not overly lenient. What wasn’t expected was the extreme leniency reflected in what the judge said about Ryan during the sentencing!
“We all know Mr. Edwards and his family,” Judge Gary Starnes said. “He’s a very fine young man. He’s very talented at what he does. We’ve all watched him grow up. He is not a bad person. He just got addicted to hardcore drugs.”
The Ashley later revealed that Judge Starnes knows Ryan and his family from more than just Teen Mom. “Ryan and Judge Starnes’ daughter, Christina, were friends in high school,” The Ashley confirms. “They attended Red Bank High School together and they have reportedly stayed in contact in the years since.”
In addition to following each other on Instagram, Christina was also reportedly in attendance at Ryan and Mackenzie’s wedding in 2017.
“Ryan’s mom, Jen Edwards, also follows Christina’s private Instagram, as of press time,” The Ashley adds. “Speaking of Jen, she and Ryan’s father Larry Edwards live just one street from Judge Starnes’ home. (Only one house and a small road separate the Edwards’ and Starnes’ properties.)”
Ryan Edwards had personal ties to prior judge too?
Ryan Edwards was arrested for possession of heroin and possession of drug paraphernalia on March 12th of 2017. The arrest was particularly remarkable because it went completely under the media radar. It wasn’t until Ryan was arrested for a probation violation in March of 2018 that news outlets were made aware of the 2017 arrest.
The Ashley later revealed that Ryan was merely cited for the initial 2017 incident, and not booked at that time. “The officers took the heroin and needles, disposed of them and let him go,” her source said. “He was given a court date of April 10, 2017. There was no mug shot of him taken.”
The Grace Report later introduced an interesting theory about why Ryan’s arrest was able to stay under the radar. (Video included below.) Grace revealed that one of Ryan’s close friends was Ryan Houston. Ryan Houston is the son of Johnny Houston, the City Judge of Red Bank, Tennessee where Ryan Edwards was charged.
Teen Mom fans may remember Ryan Houston from when he was a groomsman at Ryan and Mackenzie’s wedding. Here is a screen cap with both Ryans discussing the fact that vows hadn’t been written just prior to the ceremony:
“Is that a conflict of interest if he is indeed the judge presiding over this case?” Grace asked in her video, after revealing Ryan’s connection to Judge Houston. “I personally would believe so because, you know, according to some lawyers I know, they can’t try cases where they are friends with, like, people involved, or they know the people involved, or they know any details prior to it,” she added.
Here’s the full video from The Grace Report:
Ryan Edwards is scheduled back in court on June 12 for the previous harassment and possession of a controlled substance charges, as well as the new DUI and possession of a controlled substance charges. The judge for all of Ryan’s cases is still Judge Gary Starnes.